How Your Movie Preferences could have Predicted your Pandemic Response

This study showed that Your Movie preferences (and one specific personality trait) could could have predicted how well you handled the psychological stress of the pandemic.

Let’s see how well you rank!


Look at these 10 movie genres and rank how much you like each one on a scale of 1-7.

  1. horror
  2. zombie
  3. psychological thriller
  4. supernatural
  5. apocalyptic/post-apocalyptic
  6. science fiction
  7. alien-invasion
  8. crime
  9. comedy
  10. romance

The three main psychological outcome measures were

Positive resilience - your ability to experience positive emotional states and outlooks during the pandemic

Psychological distress- ie. things that a disrupt your in day-to-day life, like higher than usual depression, anxiety, irritability, and sleeplessness.

Preparedness - your ability to anticipate what happened, foresee downstream effects, and properly plan or supply.

Out of the 10 genres, there were three overall categories that had an impact.

  1. The prepper genre–the combination of alien-invasion, apocalyptic, and zombie films. The more you like these, the less likely you were to experience psychological distress and more likely to be better prepared, but it didn’t significantly affect your positive resilience.
  2. Horror – This wasn’t related to positive resilience OR preparedness, but if you like horror films you’re more likely to have experienced lower psychological distress. Because you’re a weirdo
  3. Finally, just having seen past pandemic films meant you were more likely to be prepared for the pandemic. But it didn’t really impact the other two traits.

Finally, the researchers also did a longer questionnaire to assess personality traits and stress levels, but we’ll just cut to the chase. No trait was related to preparedness or psychological distress, but one of these 7 was linked to increased positive resilience: and that was morbid curiosity.

Oh, and the morbidly curious folks were also more likely to have seen more pandemic films.

So. How’d you do?

Let me know in the comments and share with a horror-loving friend so we can get more data :)